Morris County Invites the Public to its 9/11 Remembrance Ceremony
Guest Speaker is U.S. Marine Veteran Who Enlisted Because of the Terror Attacks
The Morris County Board of County Commissioners is inviting residents of Morris County and beyond to join them on Sept. 10, 2023, Sunday, at 6 p.m. to observe the 22nd Anniversary of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks.
The annual remembrance ceremony will be held at the Morris County 9/11 Memorial on West Hanover Avenue in Parsippany-Troy Hills, with the keynote address to be provided by Nick De Gregorio, who served in both Iraq and Afghanistan. He was 16 years old and sitting in school when the terrorist attacks unfolded 12 miles away from his New Jersey classroom.
The events inspired Mr. De Gregorio to enlist after high school, and he was deployed four times into combat during his nine years of service.
The Morris County 9/11 Memorial on West Hanover Avenue in Parsippany-Troy Hills was constructed to pay tribute to all of the people killed in the attacks, nearly 3,000, with an emphasis on the 64 Morris County residents lost that day.
The names of all who died are engraved in ruby-colored paving stones set in the walkway surrounding the memorial, and the names of each of the 64 Morris County residents killed are additionally listed on individual, brass plates affixed atop of the memorial’s inner wall.
Circular in design, the memorial features three elevated pieces of steel from the World Trade Center, and a portion of the steel is within hand’s reach. The memorial also incorporates remnants of hijacked United Airlines Flight 93 that crashed in Shanksville, Pa., and soil from the Pentagon, the site of the crash of hijacked American Flight 77.
A pool of water encircles the memorial along with a walkway with benches for visitors to sit and reflect. The walkway also has four bridges leading across the water and toward the cemented, circle that encloses the steel.
As a plaque at the memorial explains, “The concrete blocks at the base of the steel represent the foundations of our lives: family, relationships and community. The recurring, circular forms on the site signify the continuance of life. The water surrounding the memorial symbolizes healing and rebirth. The island on which the steel beams stand and the connecting bridges suggest the blending of ethnic, cultural and spiritual differences. The flowers beneath the concrete blocks represent life and hope, reminding us that with the passing of time comes healing, peace and resolve.”
Seating at the memorial is limited, so the public is encouraged to bring lawn chairs to the outdoor observance. Parking will be available at the Morris County Department of Human Services building at 340 West Hanover Ave., on the Morris Township side of the street. Shuttle buses will be available to transport anyone needing assistance in reaching the short distance to the memorial.
Police, fire departments and rescue squads from across the county are invited to participate by sending one apparatus per department and assembling at 4:30 p.m. at the Morris County Public Safety Academy, 500 West Hanover Ave., in Parsippany-Troy Hills.